iStock_000017173323XSmallIn the latest study put out by Marketing Sherpa, data showed that nearly 97% of all consumers search for a local business online and that business owners in their 20s and 30s are twice as likely to go out and look for advice on a product or business via social channels. Combine this with the 61% of adults in the United States with smart phones and you can start to see how large the mobile market is. With each major iPhone, Android and tablet release, consumers everywhere are spending more and more time on mobile devices.

Regardless of what vertical you operate within, it is imperative that your business has some type of mobile marketing strategy. As the world of mobile has evolved to bring us an unfathomable amount of information to our fingertips, so too has our attention span. News is now carefully given to us in 140 character chunks, purchases should be made in the click of a button and our bank accounts can be accessed anywhere we have a signal.

For businesses that rely on consumer click-throughs, e-commerce or otherwise, poorly optimized pages can be the bane of your existence. When consumers are faced with a page that requires detailed maneuvering, zooming and precise finger placement to get from point A to point B, chances are you will lose them along the way.

From design to branding, consider one or more of the following when bringing a critical eye to your small business’s mobile strategy.

Content is King
While back in the antiquated days of print media, text heavy pieces were synonymous with a good story, the truth of the matter is that more than 40% of readers who navigate through content online don’t stick around to the middle of it, much less the end.

How to accommodate this epidemic, especially in the world of mobile? Move away from text heavy posts. When we stop for a moment to read a news story on our mobile devices, they are often for short micro-breaks. If you are selling your business either through brand recognition, through a post or through a product description, the briefer the better.

Have an Approachable Web Design
Almost everyone can agree to the instant frustration that comes when we navigate to a page only to find certain portions fail to load or a link that seems particularly appealing sends you to a lovely 404’ed page.
Along the same lines, pages that are poorly optimized for mobile devices can be thrown up in the same list. If your business page doesn’t amend itself to current technologies, your company will, plain and simple, lose business. If you’re looking for some quick and easy ways to get the ball rolling, check out About Technology’s post on 9 free and pretty powerful tools.

Customer Activists
Customer generated content has been shown to be one of the most influential components of impelling future purchases. While the benefits from such an initiative can be unmeasurable, putting the ducks in a row to get it started can be a bit trickier and is entirely based of the product/idea/service you are working with.

To get customers talking, it is important to first decide on which social channels you are going to be targeting. As a business owner, you need to have a good idea on which social platforms might be best suited for your product. Would a campaign urging customer to share their stories via Instagram with a targeted hashtag be beneficial? Would a video on Facebook be more conducive? Maybe a contest is more up your alley? Research and innovation are key here.

What about you? Do you have any great strategies that you have employed to success in your mobile marketing endeavors? I would love to hear your thoughts, stories and comments below.

Brett Chesney is an avid proponent of fitness and questionably healthy amounts of video games. Connect with Brett on his Twitter @DammitChesney